In line with African Peace Magazine’s mandate of promoting peace through
innovation, entrepreneurship, unity, integration and credible elections in Africa,
The joint team of African Peace Magazine, Rethink Africa Foundation, African Fact Checkers Ltd and Centre for Peace and Conflict Management in Africa arrived in Equatorial Guinea on the 17th of November 2022 and forthwith, proceeded to conduct hundreds of interviews on the streets of Malabo and other districts.
The next day the team proceeded to inspect the facilities of the Electoral commission.
The African Peace Magazine’s active participation in the Equatorial Guinea
2022 General elections included on-the-spot live reports, massive interviews [Pre and Post-Election], aimed at measuring the confidence of the public towards the elections while collating the opinion of voters.
Equatorial Guinea is divided into seven provinces.
Provinces of Equatorial Guinea (province capitals appear in brackets):
- Annobón Province on the island Annobón (San Antonio de Palé)
- Bioko Norte Province on the island Bioko (Malabo)
- Bioko Sur Province on the island Bioko (Luba)
Provinces on African mainland; the Continental Region (Río Muni):
- Centro Sur Province (Evinayong)
- Kié-Ntem Province (Ebebiyín)
- Litoral Province (Bata) includes the islands of the Corisco Bay.
- Wele-Nzas Province (Mongomo)
On polling day, we were able to observe elections in most of the polling stations.
However, prior to deployment, the team undertook consultations with critical stakeholders including the Electoral Commission along with other regional and international election observers.
We also had interactions with Civil Society Organizations, Faith-Based Organizations and the media.
In a private interview with a member of the African Union Observer Mission
Ambassador Ashimolowo Akinola, he noted that they toured most provinces
and were impressed with the level of preparation made, and further expressed his satisfaction with the conduct of the election, which he described as being “free and fair.”
This report is a summation of information both from our consultations with the various stakeholders and our findings as election observers including reports from our volunteers deployed to the various provinces. We observed key pre-election and election-day activities including election campaigns, delivery of polling materials, preparation of polling stations, voting processes and results management at polling stations. The comprehensive report will be completed shortly and delivered to the authorities of Equatorial Guinea.
The following are some of the observations of the joint Election Observers:
- The team observed that the Electoral commission was thoroughly prepared before the elections.
- The team also recognized an increase in youth awareness and participation in the electioneering process.
- The team also noted the role of social media, impact of fake news and others in the 2022 elections.
- The team observed that the campaigns were conducted in a calm and peaceful manner, parties and candidates had the opportunity to campaign freely although there were reports of some challenges
encountered by the parties and candidates, but they were isolated incidents. Those relating to security were dealt with by the national security agencies.
- The team takes note of the important contribution made by several stakeholders like Faith-Based Organizations, Civil Society Organizations, private sector and the media which helped in promoting peace and harmony during the campaigns as well as before and on polling day.
- The team commends various stakeholders for their efforts to address these challenges. In this regard, the team commends the mainstream media for the important contribution they have made in addressing some of these. We also commend the wonderful work they have done on voter education and coverage of the electoral process.
- The team takes note of the remarkable improvements made by the
electoral commission in regard to transparency, preparations, and
management of the 2022 Equatorial Guinea’s General elections.
On polling day, the Mission observed the following:
- Generally, the situation was calm, peaceful, and orderly. Most polling
stations opened on time, but there were a few which opened late for various reasons including late setting up of the station, late arrival of polling materials or polling However, we were pleased to note that the time lost was compensated by late closure of polls in the concerned polling stations. Thus, It is recommended that; the NEC should take corrective measures to ensure that these deficiencies do not reoccur in future elections.
- In the observed polling stations, security personnel were present and highly professional in the discharge of their duties; they neither interfered with electoral processes nor intimidate voters. The team commends the Equatorial Guinea Police Service for a job very well done. Please continue to do the good work everywhere and for every task you are assigned to do.
- Polling officials displayed high levels of competence and professionalism.
The Mission commends the NEC for the selection and training of poll officials. We also commend the NEC for involving young people and women in the management of the electoral processes
- The team was pleased to observe that agents of political parties and candidates were present at polling stations and were not encumbered in performing their duties.
- In all the polling stations observed, agents of political parties and candidates signed the results declaration form, and were given copies of the form.
- Overall, the team was pleased to note that the protocols and procedures for opening and closure of polling were observed.
- The team, also commend NEC for allowing party agent to stay close to
the polling stations. The layout of the polling stations gave them the opportunity to monitor and observe the voting process.
Over and above all that I have mentioned, the team would like to appeal to all political actors and stakeholders including the great people of Equatorial Guinea to continue to maintain peace after the results of the elections are declared. We implore all to embrace peaceful resolution of disputes that may arise from electoral processes. Fortunately, there is the opportunity to use the courts of law, so please make use of it if need be.
Finally the African Peace Magazine UK team of Election Observation Mission is
satisfied with the way the 2022 Equatorial Guinea General election was conducted on the polling day, the people of Equatorial Guinea were given the opportunity to elect leaders of their choice, freely.
We hope the subsequent processes will respect, uphold and reflect the will of the people of Equatorial Guinea.
I thank you for your kind attention.
Issued at the Hilton Hotel Malabo.